Help! What’s a Good Host Gift for People Who Don’t Drink Alcohol?

published Feb 26, 2020
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My friends are having my husband and I over for dinner this weekend, and I want to bring a nice host gift, but they don’t drink. Is there something other than a bottle of wine that would be nice? I’m at a loss!

– Cindy

Lisa: I have thoughts! A nice bottle of olive oil, good flakey sea salt, coasters, or napkins!

Patty: A simple vase or glass jar with flowers is always a welcome gift! Just show you put some thought into it by unwrapping the flowers from their grocery store cellophane and trimming them to fit a vase.

Lisa: Yes! Do not bring flowers that aren’t in a vase. You don’t ever want to give a host an assignment when you walk in the door. Like, “I’m here! Now find something to do with this!” A plant is also nice.

Arie: I love this question, Cindy! And I was recently in this situation, too. My friend is sensitive to alcohol — so I ended up bringing her a bottle of shrub syrup and some nice seltzer so we could have something fun to drink. My other go-to is definitely olive oil! I’m obsessed with Brightland.

Lisa: Definitely Brightland! I also just got a bottle from Sardel, which I’m excited to try.

Grace: Love the idea of olive oil or flaky salt! (Or really, just bring me Diamond Crystal kosher salt bc it’s so hard to find near me.) My friend always shows up with homemade frozen cookie dough balls that the host can just pop in their freezer and it’s such a fun hostess gift. I’d love to be known for that!

Patty: That is GENIUS.

Arie: I looooove that idea!!

Lauren Masur: I don’t know what the vibe of the dinner party is, but maybe a game you can all play together (and leave as a gift). Or a dessert that your friend would not feel pressured to serve… Like a homemade bark in a little box that specifies that it’s for them.

Arie: Ooo I love the game idea Lauren! That’s really fun. Another idea: There’s this wonderful restaurant in New York, Marea, where they used to (maybe still do?) send you home with a homemade muffin for the next morning. It felt so luxurious. So I wonder if there’s something there — like, a nice bag of coffee and some homemade granola.

Christine: Definitely something for breakfast the next day. Or a nice tea or fancy coffee beans if you know they drink that.

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